Saudi Arabia Expat Forum - Teaching English with AETG
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I'm interested in taking a position teaching English through World Education Group and AETG in Riyadh. Does anyone have any experience with them, particularly Western females?
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AETG are liars and scandalous in every sense of the meanings.
I've been here 3months (I've decided to go back home).
On arriving, I was NOT met at the airport (0010hrs) 1st May, I was unable to contact anyone given no1 was answering mobile phones (management of the company) yet 24hours before my departure to Saudi, I contacted AETG to arrange and verify the meeting at the airport, still to this day I have had no reply, from their guy Salem.
They claimed this was an anomaly and such thing had never happened before. Later that day, other Sudanese and Africans teachers told of their dilemmas similar to mine.
Took 1 week to realise nearly all the teachers had experienced the same, on entering Saudi.
Accommodation I'm unsure of, for females. Yet for western guys, you will be placed into 2 of the contracted hotels, Al-Markan is where I stay, I was shown to a room (number 30) that had Hotel workers sleeping in the sitting room, and on entering the double and single bedrooms, the rooms were a mess, and beds had been slept in. The Hotel workers had been using it for a doss house.
Later (2nd day), the apartment developed smells, which I found to be open drains.
Then there was the cockroach to contend with. Later on day 2, I threatened to return to England unless they moved me. 24HRS after a barrage of arguments with there admin manager AbuFasial, I was moved (I had to literally convince this guy that I was not a liar), as he claimed AETG HAD NEVER HAD SUCH EXPERIENCES BEFORE.
This came to be ‘their catch phrase’.
Later, other teacher told of their experiences similar mine.
Syrian and Egyptian teachers are placed to ‘The Villa’ a rundown house owned by AETG, that stores the excessive pc’s, and classroom furniture, also the academy cleaners (Philippino and Indian) share this house, NO AC, no workable kitchen and the bathroom is from the 1800’s, OH AND THE INSECTS AND COCKROACH’S ARE YOUR NEIGHBOURS, IF NOT ALREADY TAKEN A BED WITHIN YOUR ROOM.
Their admin guy Sire, will take your passport and convince you its procedure (it is for this company, but not the norm, or what the British Embassy would advise YOU to do, give your passport to anyone).
After, being moved to another apartment and fighting to get my passport back, I called this guy (Sire) out, he claimed to have submitted my passport to the ‘Ministry of Labour’, without me 1st undergoing a medical (this is the legal procedure), I took Aziz (CEO) to the admin office and Sire opened the admin 'safe', 1st passport he put his hand to, was mine. I commented that for a Muslim he was a bare faced liar, which he started to shout and deny even though he was caught in his own lie... haaaa.. even when I challenged Aziz AETG (CEO) to say something and reprimand Sire, he walked out of the office.
Seems these guys claim to be 1000% Muslim and follow the Islamic ways, but only when it suits them.
Seems all lairs are welcome to be managers and admin staff at AETG :)
AbuFasial (admin manager) throws his weight around, but when you justify any of your actions to him, he will reply that he knows better, and he prefers to believe and listen to his admin staff (who are liars). In any case Abu won’t listen to any1 but himself, literally.
Aziz (CEO) won't do anything against AbuFasial, as Abu is best friends with the company owner.
Aziz did a PhD at Newcastle Uni (UK), in what subject I'm unsure of (he claims it was IT). Aziz started AETG 9mths ago, in the IT dept as a technician. Yet even with a PhD, all the pc’s and company IT infrastructure is 3rd world; laptops are full of viruses and all are not connected to the internet. The pc’s do more harm then good.
Aziz's man-management skills are 'bare' to say the least, as this is his 1st management position (gained from nepotism), AbuFasial won't listen to anyone but himself, and the English dept head, Kahkany, he's actually ok, but will sit on the fence then to risk his job and do the right thing. Kahkany when confronted to do his job will be sympathetic initially, but to conclude anything in the obvious most common sense of ways (doing the right thing), he will sit and not resolve anything, he'll actually make you believe you did wrong, or in a sense; suggest you were the 1st to instigate wrong doings, or to live with what has transpired/occurred.
Any issues with students, Kahkany will just 'change the teacher', listening and believing the students over the teachers; reason for this, the students pay for the courses, and he needs to make sure the students are happy.
The student entrance test to AETG means nothing, everyone starts at level 1. This way, from the 11 levels offered, in the long run the company make more money, from level 1 through to level 11.
In ‘all’; accommodation can be good if you get to select your room. Don't listen to anything AETG tell you, learn all yourself, from embassies, from past teachers etc.
If you work to a standard, AETG will make sure they strip that from you, to conform exactly to what they want you to do, regardless to the risk of your professionalism.
The foreign work force at AETG is gagged, as they risk losing their jobs, but all are good characters and personalities. This is what actually makes the job bearable. It’s the management that would want you to leave.
Hence I’m leaving next week.
As for female teachers: checkout this link dated March 2010:
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I am looking for female teacher (american's teachers ) to work in international elementery school in riyadh with excelent benifts
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i f you are interesting send me email :
with your cv
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Six months ago JaymeMK asked about experience others have had in working with WEgroup and AETG. That was the beginning of our activity on this project, and over the time since then we have found AETG very cooperative, willing to acknowledge and eager to solve problems and help secure iqamas, and according to the teachers we sent this past fall AETG has been a good employer. Our teachers, both male and female, have reported quite reasonable accommodations, teaching hours and placements. All of our teachers are native English speakers. If anyone is interested in an EFL assignment in Saudi Arabia or has questions about my response, please feel free to contact me by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Monday, 31 January 2011 | Safar 26, 1432 | Last updated at 10:01
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Home / Saudi Arabia / ‘E’ for exploitation: Teachers brought on false promises, left to fend for themselves
‘E’ for exploitation: Teachers brought on false promises, left to fend for themselves
By WALAA HAWARI | ARAB NEWS
Published: Mar 31, 2010 00:12 Updated: Mar 31, 2010 00:12
RIYADH: A number of expatriate women teachers in Riyadh, many of them from Western countries, are complaining the company that employed them has violated their employment contracts, not kept promises and has been burdening them with extra work.
“Since arriving last October, we’ve been forwarding our complaints to the company that recruited us. Our contracts state that our families would be joining us, and six months on they’re still not here,” said one of the teachers, who requested anonymity.
She added that what has been particularly worrying is the well-being of a Western colleague who, suffering from psychological problems, disappeared from Riyadh’s airport after being taken there to be returned home.
“We had also brought her condition to the attention of the management at Arabian Education and Training Group (AETG), the company responsible for our contracts and whose general manager’s name is on our contracts, but no action was taken and the lady broke down mentally more than once,” said the teacher.
The management interfered much later, she said. By then the teacher was taken to hospital and promised that an emergency visa would be arranged to enable her to bring a family member to the Kingdom to escort her to her home country.
The teacher was, however, taken from hospital, put up in a hotel and then taken to the airport to travel home alone even though she was in a terrible condition.
“We were then informed that she had disappeared from the airport and no one is aware of her whereabouts,” said the teacher.
Around 100 teachers had been recruited by AETG to teach at a prominent university in Riyadh. Most of the teachers have left, disappointed at working conditions and the inability to bring along their families.
Salim Ameen, AETG’s visa and recruitment officer, rejected the allegations, adding that some of the teachers were brought to the Kingdom on temporary work permits and visas by their own choice, and that they were informed that their contract states that teachers could bring their families but the company is not committed to arranging this.
“Some teachers, like those from Canada and America, can acquire temporary work visas, which cannot be transferred into permanent work visas. The contracts are general, they state that they have the right to bring their families, but they do not commit the group to do so,” said Ameen.
He added that should they wish to bring their families, the company will provide them with the necessary documents and submit them to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
“From the first few days of the job, we discovered we were teaching at a university and Al-Faisal Academy at the same time. The living conditions were not as we expected. It was, however, the case of our colleague which blew up the entire situation because it was then that we discovered the poor management and communication, which prevented her from getting proper medical care,” said the teacher.
She added that when the management was informed of the teacher’s condition, it refused to sign a request for medical care, which led to her condition worsening.
A source at Al-Faisal Academy denied the institute had anything to do with the recruitment or management of expatriate teachers.
Meanwhile, another Western teacher recruited by AETG said she is stranded in her accommodation waiting to return home. “I have been waiting for three weeks in my room after I was fired from my job,” said the teacher who also preferred anonymity.
This teacher also came to the Kingdom on a temporary work permit and said she was not informed the visa could not be transferred into a permanent one.
Nevertheless, her real agony began when she asked for her passport, which she said had a valid visa. “When I was given the passport I was informed that the visa had expired and that I needed to travel to Bahrain to the group's office to renew it,” she said.
She added that to her disappointment she was turned away by immigration authorities as her visa had expired two months before.
She then returned to Riyadh by bus and informed the company. “They took my passport again claiming that they would renew the visa themselves, that there was a SR10,000 fine for the visa expiry and that I had been fired. The reasons they gave were unjustified,” she said.
A week later, she was told a flight had been booked for her to return home. She was taken to the airport and left there. She was, however, unable to pass immigration because of the outstanding fine. The teacher then informed the company, which picked her up from the airport, gave her a room in a compound, and took her passport to renew the visa.
“All that I get when I call them is ‘tomorrow,’ ‘tomorrow.’ I have been waiting for the last three weeks,” she said, adding that her embassy has also contacted the company and received the same reply.
“I have no job, no passport, no money and I just want to go home,” said the teacher.
In a letter to Arab News, one of the teachers said they had been promised that their families would be with them within 21 days of their arrival in the Kingdom. Some were told their husbands would be with them within one week of their coming and their children within three weeks.
“Based on all that, we resigned from our jobs, sold our homes and furniture, and did not enroll our children into schools,” wrote the teacher.
She added that they were later informed that their families could only come to the Kingdom on visit visas. The teachers’ requests for housing allowance also elicited a blank response.
There is still no news about the teacher who disappeared from the airport and no one from AETG was available for comment.
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I seriously strongly urge you to as much research as possible on this company before you take the plunge to join them.
The reply you had before is a very true reflection of the nature of this company. But I'm sorry to say that its not even a quarter of how truly bad these people can be to expats. I myself am currently working in Riyadh. I have had an extremely bad experience myself working with this company.
In general Saudi society is very bad at dealing with foreigners. It's treatment of expats is shameful for me as a Muslim. They have learned very little from the teachings of the noble word of God.
They are the most blatantly racist country in the world. I am not blind and am aware that institutional racism does exist in other countries in the west as well. But at least back home in England they are taking steps towards eradicating as much of it as possible, however I doubt it can ever be completely rid off.
Here in Saudi, they don't even believe that they are racist.
There are lots of companies here hiring people for English instruction. Most don't last or never return after they have completed their jail term.
They have a new guy here now in place of Abu Faisal, who is just as bad as him. He has links with ARAMCO the large oil company. He has started recruiting for AETG through Global Solutions. Global Solutions are obviously oblivious to the poor conduct of AETG.
Working as a sinlge woman in Saudi can make one go mad. Becaust there are lots of restrictions on what you can do, where you can go etc
Kahkani is from Egypt is a compulsive liar.
Dr. Ibrahim is a compulsive liar!
In truth they are all compulsive liars.
They are supposed to be Muslim as I am. They are shame to mankind.
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Off subject a bit.. I am looking for employment in KSA or Kuwait. My background is in project management and as a corporate trainer. I have an MBA. I only speak english. My question is- am I wasting my time looking for employment in KSA and Kuwait? I also have work experience in the civil engineering field.
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I have recently signed the contract for Arabian Education and Training Group and have just received my 90 day visa. I only recently began researching them (not to bright on my part but I needed a job rather quickly so I jumped on the opportunity that seemed to be moving) and I've discovered that they seem to have a dismal reputation.
It's my hope that they have done some things to clean up their act. Does anybody have first hand knowledge of what it is like to work for them? Is anybody working for them now? Thoughts?
At this point is it too late to try and sign on with another company? I am rather committed to them but not as committed as I would be if I was in Riyadh right now. Would I be able to sign a new contract with a new company at this point?
Does anybody have good pointers of ways to interact with management so they treat you with more respect while keeping the energy positive?
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I worked for AETG for over an year, and they are the worst employer in saudi. Stay well away from them.
for starters, they are the lowest paying amongst all agencies. They have recently had a new guy as executive vice president, he has brought in alot of changes. they are all compulsive liars.
i will advise everyone to ask for a contract copy before signing anything, this is a standard procedure amongst other agencies, but AETG will never send you one.
They operate on a split-shift basis, you will be working 8-12 and 5-9pm there is no choice.
They have recently lost all the contracts with good universities of Saudi, and only have one or two contracts in the furthest corners of the country and they will send you there or threaten to sack you if you don't want to go.
They also refuse to pay people any housing allowances and will try to force you to live in their accommodation.
The first guy to watch out for is Salem, he is a recruitment manager, and will tell you what you want to hear. When you go to him for whatever he promised he will simply say, the company policy has now changed and there is nothing he can do to help.
A friend of mine was personally told by the VP, called Ramzi, that dont listen to anyone else they dont know anything about company policies.
when i worked for them they broke every promise they ever made, the mangers are called Salem, Suleman, Eesa, and the accountant is called Rifaat. He is actually the worst of them all. They will all tell you different lies and then refute each other.
Things to note in the contract: there will be a clause that if you leave in the middle of the contract, you will pay them one months wage, which is not normal practice. Also, you will not be paid housing allowance, they will make you live in their housing which at the moment is in a secluded place out of the city. they will also dock three days pay of you are absent for a day without reason(they will choose to accept or not to accept the reason you give them). They will also keep two months pay if you want to leave the country for whatever reason other than your annual holiday, no other company will do this.
I can go on forever, these are just the highlights to be honest.
My advice is to just avoid them, ask around especially people who know anything about ESL in Saudi. and definitely don't sign on anything until you get a copy of the contract.
I had heard bad things, but went ahead thinking its just internet negativity, but they turned out to be worse than I heard.
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100% right, same thing i heard from people i know was working there, all of that happened when son of prince Faisal dismiss a partnership with "Ahmed Al Tawil" -rumor- says because of money but honestly i dont know
Good luck man
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